Elite Dangerous players will finally be able to get out of their vehicles and wander around alien worlds this year, but there's going to be a slightly longer wait before pilots can put their boots on the ground.
Frontier has, unsurprisingly, been affected by the ongoing pandemic. As a UK studio, it's now dealing with a new lockdown, and this has naturally had an impact on its development timeline.
"Our PC plans have only been affected by a small amount, however our plans for the console release will unfortunately see a larger development shift," Frontier said in an announcement today. "Please do know that these difficult decisions have been made with a focus on making Odyssey as incredible as it can possibly be for all our Commanders regardless of their platform, while also respecting realistic project deadlines for our teams during this difficult global situation."
Alpha access for PC players is still coming soon, but now it's due in early spring. Elite Dangerous: Odyssey Deluxe Alpha and Lifetime Expansion Pass holders will get access to the alpha, becoming Elite's first on-the-ground frontier explorers.
"Much like our original Elite Dangerous release, we will be taking a phased approach to our alpha, bringing new features and systems online throughout the period," said Frontier This will allow us to focus and best consider our community feedback while also providing vital user testing on key areas of the game. We will be sharing further information including details of feature drops and alpha plans as we get closer to release."
The full PC release is coming in late spring 2021, while console players will be stuck waiting until autumn. To get the skinny on the new expansion, give Andy Kelly's Elite Dangerous: Odyssey preview a read.